MFIP units may choose to "opt out" of the cash portion of the MFIP grant. The unit will continue to be eligible for the food portion of MFIP, as well as other program benefits, including employment support services and child care.
Do not count any month a unit chooses not to receive the MFIP cash portion toward the 60-month lifetime limit. Units otherwise exempt from the 60-month limit will receive no additional advantage in choosing only the food portion of MFIP. When a unit chooses to begin receiving the cash portion of the grant again, each month of the cash portion will count toward the 60-month limit, unless another exemption is met. See 0011.30 (60-Month Lifetime Limit).
Assistance units that are required to have all or part of the cash portion vendor paid cannot choose to opt out of the MFIP cash portion. It includes units subject to mandatory vendoring due to 2nd through 6th occurrence of Employment Services and child support sanctions. See 0028.30 (Sanctions for Failure to Comply - Cash), 0028.30.03 (Pre 60-Month Type/Length of ES Sanctions). Also see 0024.09 (Protective and Vendor Payments).
When a mandatory vendor payment period ends, the unit can choose to opt out of the MFIP cash portion. A unit on voluntary vendor payments must choose whether it wants to continue voluntary vendor payments or to opt out of the MFIP cash portion but cannot choose to do both.
Units must choose to opt out of the cash portion by the 22nd of the month prior to the month the change is to take place. There are no EXCEPTIONS. A unit MAY NOT return a warrant or money in the amount of the benefit issued and choose at that time to opt out of the MFIP cash portion for the payment month.
Units that have opted out of the MFIP cash portion may, at a later date, choose to receive both the cash and food portions of the MFIP grant. The unit must notify the county agency that it wants to make the change, by the 22nd of the month prior to the month the change is to take place. There are EXCEPTIONS to the deadline for choosing to opt back into the cash portion after the 22nd of the month:
When a significant change occurs and the unit reports it timely, the unit may choose to begin to receive the cash portion in the month of a significant change and the months thereafter.
When there is a change in assistance unit composition, the unit may choose to receive the cash portion the month a person is added or removed from the unit and the months thereafter.
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There is no restriction on the number of times a unit can choose to opt out of the cash portion and start it again.
Monthly reporting income notices mailed to units who choose to opt out of cash portion will include the following language: "You told us you do not want the cash part of MFIP. Your cash benefit would have been $____. If you change your mind for the next month, tell your worker by the 22nd of the month."
Notices sent at recertification or income review to units who have not chosen to opt out of the cash portion will say: "You can choose not to get the cash part of MFIP. Your 60-month clock will stop if you don’t get cash. Tell your worker if you want to make this change."
Also see TEMP Manual TE13.033 (Opting Out of MFIP Cash Portion) for MAXIS procedures.
DWP, SNAP, MSA, GA, GRH: